Empower informal carers: FIP

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New strategies and services that empower informal carers, particularly women, need to be delivered, says FIP

The International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) has said in a new Statement of Policy that it is urging pharmacists to further the support they give to women to provide caregiving at home.

Health systems currently rely heavily on women as informal carers, but they do not provide adequate support for them, the statement says.

FIP’s 144 national member organisations across 103 countries and territories adopted the policy statement “Pharmacists supporting women and responsible use of medicines ― Empowering informal carers”, which urges governments to support pharmacists in this aim through appropriate remuneration models that consider societal values and potential savings.

FIP said that health outcomes can be improved by ensuring a stable financial commitment for training and empowerment projects targeting women carers and new women-centred services delivered in collaboration with associations of pharmacists and other healthcare professionals.

Through their adoption of the statement, national pharmacy organisations around the world have committed to further advocate to governments for improving health outcomes in this way, says FIP.

In addition, some look set to initiate and conduct projects related to women and their empowerment as informal carers (such as developing a standardised screening tool for pharmacists to anticipate and meet the needs of women in their communities), and consider the allocation of scientific or special research funds to projects that produce a positive impact on the improvement of women’s social status.

“Understanding how pharmacists can support women in their role as informal carers can facilitate achieving the ambitious United Nations Sustainable Development Goals of gender equality and sustainable development by 2030, and help reduce potential health-related inequalities to a minimum,” said Ema Paulino, FIP professional secretary. 

This new FIP Statement of Policy follows the publication of an FIP report in September 2018, which contains examples of how pharmacists in different countries are supporting women caregivers.

The full statement of policy can be found here.

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